A U.S pastor who has been in detention in Turkey for the last 21 months has been released from prison but will remain under house arrest in Turkey pending the determination of his case.
Pator Andrew Brunson who has worked in Turkey for 20 years is being held on terrorism charges. He is accused of assisting a terrorist group said to be behing the 2016 failed military coup in Turkey.
Brunson’s lawyer Ismail Cem Halavurt said , Brunson would be required to wear an electronic ankle bracelet and was not allowed to leave the country.
The court had last week rejected a call for Brunson’s release but later agreed to his release on health grounds after a re-evaluation of the plea.
Brunson’s release could help ease tension between the U.S and Turkey. Sources say the U.S was about issuing tough sanctions against Turkey. Both countries have been at loggerheads over the Syrian war.
Turkey accuses the U.S of protecting Fethullah Gulen, the U.S.-based cleric who they say is the mastermind behind the coup attempt against President Tayyip Erdogan which left 250 people dead .
Brunson is also charged with supporting outlawed PKK Kurdish militants and could face 35 years in prison if found guilty.